Home Remedies for Colds, Flu and Sore Throats

There’s nothing better on a cold winter day that a hot bowl of soup! Soup also soothes a sore throat like no other. With cold and flu season hitting hard it’s a good idea to put healing foods into our diets, or boost our normal amounts. I’m going to focus on three specific foods and share a bonus recipe for using all three!

Ginger is well-known for various healing properties and useful during: nausea, colds & flu, inflammation and other ailments. There have been many research studies done on ginger which have verified the healing potential packed into this spicy rhizome.
Onions are also superb as healing foods. High in quercetin, onions are useful for coughs and colds as well as more serious ailments such as cardiovascular health issues and osteoporosis.
, that pungent little bulb, packs a punch against viruses and bacteria. With more than 3,000 articles published, garlic is popular for good reason.
Garlic’s major healing component is allicin, which garlic and onions both contain. “In a 12-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, allicin powder was found to reduce the incidence of the common cold by over 50%.”

Here’s a tasty soup that incorporates all three: Chinese Cabbage Soup.Homemade Chinese Cabbage Soup.

Homemade Chinese Cabbage Soup.

Chinese Cabbage Soup

5 qts water
1 pound round steak diced, grass-fed if possible (or meat of your choice)
1 small organic onion, finely chopped
3 Tbs finely diced fresh ginger root
3 organic cloves garlic, diced
2 organic carrots, shredded
2-3 pounds organic Bok Choy (you can substitute, Japanese cabbage or green cabbage) thinly sliced. (I sourced some locally grown bok choy!)
6-8 baby Portobello mushrooms sliced. (I ordered through our buying club!)
1/4 cup Braggs Liquid Aminos
Salt to taste (I use pink Himalayan salt)
Crushed red pepper to taste
Bring water to boil in large stock pot. Add diced beef, be sure to throw in any fat trimmings or bones (if you have some) to add flavor and nutrition, these can be removed before serving. Add onions, garlic, ginger and carrots.
Simmer for 30 minutes.
Add cabbage, mushrooms, salt, and pepper flakes and simmer for 10 more minutes, or until cabbage appears wilted. Stir in aminos right before serving.

This makes a savory and delightful broth based soup that’s soothing and filling. The broth alone is wonderful for those with sore throats or unable to eat a full meal. A perfect between meal snack as well.

For other helpful home remedies check here.

Southeast Kansas Buying Club
Your local whole foods resource.
Serving Independence, Kansas
and surrounding areas.

Soul Food Junkies

Watch Soul Food: Good to You vs. Good for You on PBS. See more from Independent Lens.

In Soul Food Junkies, filmmaker Byron Hurt sets out on a historical and culinary journey to learn more about the soul food tradition and its relevance to black cultural identity. Through candid interviews with soul food cooks, historians, and scholars, as well as with doctors, family members, and everyday people, the film puts this culinary tradition under the microscope to examine both its positive and negative consequences. Hurt also explores the socioeconomic conditions in predominantly black neighborhoods, where it can be difficult to find healthy options, and meets some pioneers in the emerging food justice movement who are challenging the food industry, encouraging communities to “go back to the land” by creating sustainable and eco-friendly gardens, advocating for healthier options in local supermarkets, supporting local farmers’ markets, avoiding highly processed fast foods, and cooking healthier versions of traditional soul food. (sourced from PBS.org)

Southeast Kansas Buying Club will be represented at the screening of Soul Food Junkies, along with Mitchell Family Farm of Cherryvale. Wont you join us?
Date: Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Time: 6:00 PM 
Location: Labette Community College – Thiebaud Theater
200 S. 14th St., Parsons, Kansas 67357

Southeast Kansas Buying Club
Wholesome, Healthy Foods~Locally!
Independence, Kansas

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Southeast Kansas Buying Club
Your source for whole foods
Independence, Kansas

Why Join Our Buying Club?

Why Join Our Buying Club?

Cooperatives have benefits!

Southeast Kansas Buying Club is a Cooperative and is supported by members who volunteer their time and skills in order for our club to operate.

By participating in SEKS Buying club you will:

  • Save money through volume purchasing, with deeply reduced costs.
  • Have food and merchandise delivered to you at a central location.
  • Learn new skills related to food, health, home economics and discover local resources.
  • Meet new people and strengthen community ties.

Southeast Kansas Buying Club’s main purpose is to provide members with high quality natural foods, at a reasonable cost while creating a supportive network. The club depends on everyone’s volunteer efforts to place orders, distribute and help the club run smoothly.

Click here if you would like to become a member.

Zero Waste?

Is it possible to live without generating any trash in our modern-day society?

(By trash, I mean items that end up in landfill)

What do you think? I think that it may be possible, but it will take conscious effort.

Our family has tried to reduce~reuse~recycle whenever possible. We were more successful in the beginning when our recycling center was fully accepting recyclable items like glass and plastic. As our local center started refusing items, it made it more difficult for us. So we slowly slipped back into our old ways. But I am resolved to get back to being a better steward!

How many bags of trash do you set out per week? Are you recycling? Do you reuse items to keep from putting them in the trash? Share some of your tips with our readers please.

Right now our family of 5 is generating 3 bags of trash per week (13 gal kitchen sized bags) and this is too much! My initial goal is to reduce that to 1 bag per week, then I’d like to reduce that to less if we can.

If you’re like me, you need some inspiration to get you going with reducing your waste. Let me introduce the Johnson family to you. They live in California and in 6 month’s time only produced a handful of trash.  Bea Johnson has done many of the things that I see our club members doing: using cloth bags, bringing your own container to put your bulk items in, recycling waste, reusing boxes and containers that can be re-purposed and so on.

The Johnson’s give three tips to go waste-free:

1. Graduate from just bringing your own shopping bags to the grocery store, Johnson says, and use reusable bags to buy produce as well.
2. Think twice before buying plastic products, and make sure you buy only what you really need. “Shopping is voting,” Johnson says.
3. Refuse junk mail through sites like dmachoice.org and catalogchoice.org.

Click over and read the entire article, it’s very inspiring!

One of the ways to reduce waste is to re-purpose items that have been discarded. I’ve been saving old T-shirts to make into a braided rag rug. Recently I re-purposed some soda bottles, cardboard and straps off of a bag that was to be discarded along with some duct tape, hot glue and spray paint to create this fun accessory that I found on Pinterest~

Playtime Jet Pack.

Playtime Jet Pack.

Ready to blast off!

Ready to blast off!









Will you take the challenge to reduce your waste with me? Comment and in the next few months we will revisit this post and see how we’ve progressed!
Happy reducing!

Healthy in the New Year?

Along with the new year come many resolutions to make oneself healthier via loosing weight, becoming more active, giving up a bad habit or other forms of “healthy”. Being a member of a buying club, most of us already have “healthy” in our daily vocabulary. Still some of us wouldn’t mind shedding a few pounds or adding more activity to our daily routines. And rightly we should.

Adding exercise or activity to your day doesn’t necessarily mean you have to rush out and buy a gym membership, although you could if you wanted to.  One way to add activity to your daily routine is to simply take the stairs, instead of the elevator. Or park farther away from the store entrance, adding extra steps to your walk to and from your car. For other simple ideas to increase your activity levels check here. If you do well with visual reminders, here are some Printable worksheets to track activity and help increase your activity level.

Now, what about food? Well many of us are already eating healthier. In our club we have members with a variety of dietary needs including: Raw diet, Traditional Foods (Nourishing Traditions style), Vegan, vegetarian, Gluten-free, Dairy-free and other special diets. So how do we improve on these? Eating nutrition dense foods is important for our well-being, but it’s easy to over eat when we are eating such foods. Slow down, chew your food well. Digestion begins in the mouth, both the action of chewing (which signals the stomach that food is on its way) and mixing your food with saliva (which contains enzymes to begin the digestion process) are vitally important and should be done well. In our modern fast food/microwave society, we find ourselves hurrying through meals, fast eating usually means that we haven’t chewed our food well.

A good rule of thumb is as follows: if you can tell what kind of food you are eating from the texture of the food in your mouth (not the taste), then you haven’t chewed it enough.

Chewing our food should not only make our food easier to swallow, it should slow our eating process down, so that we can enjoy our food, and allow our stomach the time to “feel” full, instead of leaping for that second helping before our stomach even realizes it’s got a job to do.

"Healthier" No-Bake Cookies, One more please??

“Healthier” No-Bake Cookies, One more please??

Portion control is just as important as what we eat. It’s easy for me to think to myself, “oh, this is healthy, I can have another portion”. “Healthy” is my excuse to eat more. Defeating the purpose of “healthy” in the first place! Visual portion control helps can be found here. And a generic points system can be found here, if counting points is more your style.

Let’s not forget that other important element to our well-being, water. Clear, pure water. Boring you say? Our bodies need sufficient water daily for proper function, to flush toxins, keep us hydrated (and avoid that winter dry skin) and keep our blood flowing well. The amount of water necessary for optimum health varies between the “Experts”. Around my house we’ve gone by the recommendation of “divide your body weight in half, and drink that many ounces in water” daily. So for a 180 pound person this would be approximately 90 ounces of water a day, or 6 16 oz glasses (rounded up). Drinking water not only helps us with hydration, it also helps us avoid the “munchies”. Often when we think our bodies are telling us that we are hungry, really what we need is water. Drink a glass of water, and if you’re still hungry, a healthy snack is in order, such as an apple or carrots with humus. Here’s a fun little Hydration Calculator Quiz.

Hopefully some of these tips and suggestions will help you to achieve your health goals for the new year. Here’s to a healthy New Year to you and yours from your Southeast Kansas Buying Club!



2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 4,000 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 7 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Being Thankful for Our Food

Written by member Brandi M, with contributions.

When you say “thankful” this time of year it usually conjures up images of
black and white-clad pilgrims and plump turkeys. Vegetarians might imagine a horn of plenty stuffed with fruits and veggies. Still others think forward to the next big holiday and imagine their halls all decked out and the major shopping event that will happen in a few days.

But wait…

What does it mean to truly be thankful for our food?

In America we have largely enjoyed abundance, most of us, for all of our lives. Such abundance that people in third world countries never even dream about. We may eat more meat in one meal than many eat in a month’s time. Really? Yes, really.

Do we ever really sit and ponder what it means to be thankful for our food?

Trace the necessary path for your food. In order for you to eat something, someone (perhaps yourself) had to prepare it. Someone had to buy it. Someone else had to grow it and prepare it for you to buy. There was

someone or more than one who had to earn the money to purchase the food. The list can go on and on. In that list we also find our buying club, the varied individuals and families that come together with a common goal of bringing wholesome foods to the area, with affordable prices.

In our diverse group, being thankful has various meanings, manifestations and realities. With permission, I will share some with you here.

 About a year ago I was diagnosed with Celiacs disease, after many years of mysterious ailments I was grateful to have a diagnoses but confused how to move forward with this new information. After much research and talking with friends with same or similar food restrictions I changed almost everything regarding my diet. I know follow a gluten-free diet in combination with the type O blood type diet. I am very grateful for my local food cooperative as well as friends that have assisted with this journey. I am grateful for the support of my family who do not always understand but go with it anyway. I still have a way to go in reaching my goal of living without medication and only using food as my primary medicine but I have a good start. ~Jennifer C.

Being thankful for my food, What does it mean to me? Thanking God first for the filling of my families bellies…no matter if it is a bowl of rice or a seven course meal. Having the ability and freedom to raise chickens, grow my own garden and drink raw milk (for now). Having options outside of the big box store. I am thankful that I still have food choice and freedoms and folks willing to fight to keep them for me. I am thankful that I can rest assured that even sparrows are taken care of by God and so shall I be. ~Carolyn S.

Being thankful for our food means to me that I acknowledge there is a Higher Power than myself and all the work and energy put into growing, harvesting, hunting, gathering is a gift from God, because of His love for His children. I am grateful for our buying club and all the wonderful people in it who are so helpful with information to guide us in our food choices that improve the life and health of our families and all the work that keeps our club alive. I am also grateful for the knowledge and understanding of what is going on in this world that helps us make, not only the right food choices for the health of our bodies, but that we can understand our spiritual needs and can help us make the right choices for our spiritual growth, which is infinitely more important than our physical well-being. I am grateful that we live in a country where we have so many freedoms and I pray that we don’t lose them. ~Margaret G.

I am thankful for the privilege of living on a farm in a family who loves to produce food. My son and mother in law raise beautiful organic vegetables, I enjoy milking cows, and raising chickens for eggs and meat. We also raise heritage pigs for pork and a beef each year.  Everyone in the family pitches in to help in one way or another. It is a blessing to be able to do this and I am quite aware that our family is in the minority of people who are in a position to be able to raise our own food. With our modern-day lifestyle, there are foods that we enjoy but cannot or choose not to raise on the farm. Some years we have crop failures or other issues that impact the availability of certain foods. For these items I am extremely grateful to have a natural foods buying club (SEKBC) available in our area. The members of the club band together to pool our resources to purchase foods such as organic grains, beans, snack foods and other products in large enough quantities from wholesalers to be able to bring the prices down to a manageable level for our budget. The club also provides a social setting to find other people interested in healthy lifestyles.  Food is necessary for life and I am grateful that God has provided it bountifully for our family through the work of our hands on the farm and through the ability to purchase organic foods from the SEKBC. ~Deanna M.

My own reality of being thankful for my food lies with my Creator. I have been so extremely blessed in my life, both with my needs met and those little “extra” blessings that I cannot begin to express my gratitude sufficiently. I do extend my thanks to each SEK Buying Club member, for without you, we wouldn’t have that choice. I realize that it takes every one of us to make this happen and your contribution does not go unnoticed.

 May you have a blessed season of thanks!


Photo Credit: Agricultural Research Service, the research agency of the United States Department of Agriculture, with the ID K7252-65

Our favorite and most plentiful fall fruit~apples. We eat a lot of apples in our house, they are my children’s favorite fruit for snacks. Organic apples are our preferred choice and we order them from both UNFI/Albert’s Organics and Azure Standard.

Here’s a few yummy seasonal recipes for your apple supply, from the main dish to the dessert. Perhaps you’ll find a new fall favorite here!

Baked Chicken & Apples
Apples pair well  with many meats, chicken is my favorite.

Healthy “Caramel” Apple Dip
This recipe comes highly recommend by club member Elizabeth M.*

Baked Apple-Cinnamon French Toast 
I love a good stuffed french toast and this one sounds delicious!

Cabbage Salad with Apples and Walnuts
There’s a lot of options for this salad!

A delightful dessert for a cool evening!

Apple braid
A lovely braided bread stuffed with apples. This would make a wonderful hostess gift for your next party!

Baked Apple Shells with Ice Cream & Caramel
A friend* of mine found these little delights on Pinterest. Simple in preparation and beautiful in presentation, try these little gems out next time you host dinner.

I hope that you will try out a few (or all) of these apple recipes this fall. Be sure to let us know how they turned out!! Happy Fall Ya’ll!

*Thanks to Elizabeth and Debra for the inspiration!




It’s Fall…. Almost!

The calendar says September and with the cooler temps of the last few days, it’s starting to feel more like fall although we aren’t there “officially” yet.

With fall and cooler weather comes apple harvest, cider and bonfires. Wiener roasts and hot cocoa on camp-outs tops our list of fun fall activities. What are some of your favorite things to do in the fall?